Water intake and factors affecting water intake of growing beef cattle Academic Article uri icon


  • A study was conducted to measure water intake in 7 to 9 mo old growing beef cattle, and to determine the effect of breed composition, gender, dry matter intake and body weight (BW) gain on water consumption. Growing bulls, steers, and heifers (n = 146; average starting BW of 276 ± 67. kg) were housed in an open-sided barn for a period of 13 wk. Feed and water intake were measured individually in cattle reared in groups of 16 to 18 animals using the GrowSafe™ system. Cattle were weighed weekly. Mean BW gain was 1.41. kg/d. Mean water intake was 29.98. L ± 8.56. L/ head/d. Cattle of Brahman and Romosinuano breeding consumed less water than British and Continental influenced cattle at the same metabolic BW (P < 0.05). There was no difference among bulls, steers, and heifers in water intake per kg of metabolic BW. The mean daily temperature remained within the thermal neutral zone throughout the study and had no influence on water intake. Water intake was positively correlated (P < 0.05) with feed intake and BW gain. There was no relationship between water intake and gain-to-feed ratio. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

author list (cited authors)

  • Brew, M. N., Myer, R. O., Hersom, M. J., Carter, J. N., Elzo, M. A., Hansen, G. R., & Riley, D. G.

complete list of authors

  • Brew, MN||Myer, RO||Hersom, MJ||Carter, JN||Elzo, MA||Hansen, GR||Riley, DG

publication date

  • January 1, 2011 11:11 AM